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Frank’s Fort

Hey Team,

I made it to Frankfort, MI, no joke, named after a guy named Frank that used to own a Fort here on the bay. Apparently everyone used to say, “Hey let’s go meet at Frank’s Fort.” (I was assured I wasn’t being screwed with on this point.)

Regardless, I’ve made it to the next destination, I’ve seen the lighthouse I’m sleeping in tonight and I’ve already met some incredible people. It’s such a great cap to an otherwise crappy week. Right now I’m even less excited about the lighthouse than I am to continue to spend time around people that are eager to share their lives and their town with me.

This is an amazingly diverse town but not in the usual sense of the word. The area may even rival Pigeon Forge, TN and Branson, MO for high levels of weird. Not that same kind of “quirky show and tourist trap” weird that they have in those towns but there does seem to be an awful lot of tourism here.

In this case I keep getting driven around the lake while Andy, the guy who was generous enough to pick me up at the bus station an hour from here and More >

Geocaching Attack!

Hey Team,

It’s been a pretty exhausting week. I can’t imagine a worse way to clean up all these geocaches that I’ve missed in my multiple trips across the country than via a series of long bus rides where no one wants to talk unless they’re already talking to themselves followed but stints of wandering through strange cities long enough to get tired but not long enough to make new friends.

But in the positive column it’s nice to see the map fill in with states I don’t have to continue to worry about. The geocaches are definitely coming along and more importantly I’m on my way to Michigan and Indiana now not just to geocache but to head up to the second most photographed lighthouse in America which ALSO happens to be coming up on its 150th anniversary. You can imagine how excited I am just to sleep somewhere where I’m not sitting upright in a disturbingly undersized and uncomfortable seat so it’s doubly awesome that I get to cross another one off the list at the same time in such an epic place!

I better go jump on yet another bus with a painfully few (i.e. no) outlets at my disposal. More >

The Day the Universe Decided to Punish Me

Hey Team,

Today started out pretty typical. I had a clear-cut goal I wanted to accomplish. I had the means and the wherewithal to make it happen. And I was well rested. Then the universe decided that today was the day I got my comeuppance.

Someone, somewhere, decided now was the time to punish me for some unknown but obviously terrible transgressions that I’ve made in my past.

The plan was to swing through Connecticut, New Jersey and Delaware (at least) to clean up some missed geocaches before heading westward for a couple bigger list items. I had laid things out pretty well. (Not to pat myself on the back it’s just that you guys know it’s kind of a big deal when I manage to plan anything at all. So, yeah. I was a little proud.) First stop was Hartford, CT and there was a cache that was less than half a mile from the bus station AND another bus leaving for New Jersey 45 minutes later. Plenty of time to hop off, grab the cache and make it back to head out for the next one.

But my batteries died. And as it turns out there’s no such thing as an open More >

#25 Be in a Movie!

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#29 Drive a race car! [podcast]

Hey Team,

Sorry the updates have been so few and far between this week. With all the bus rides and the 14 hour days on set for “The Surrogates” (more on that tomorrow) it’s been impossible to find the time to get things posted. BUT, without any further ado…

“Amtrekker travels to the small town of Huron, SD (where he seems to be a really for real celebrity) and drives a race car for the first time!

Autographs and trophies are tossed around like candy.”

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Thanks!

I’m done.

Brett.

If you enjoy the podcasts…why not donate?

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Assault on Miners

Hey Team,

Not everything on the list is adrenaline fueled (obviously). But a great case in point is #11 “Go into a coal mine.” I may have mentioned this before but a good portion of the list exists because I occasionally get that feeling that I was born in either the wrong time or the wrong place to experience everything I would like to experience. So rather than get my heart rate up, the coal mine is really more of a steep slide into Nerdville. A learning experience and not much more.

And that’s exactly what I got at the Lackawana County Coal Mine yesterday. Most important lesson learned: I now know exactly why so many people told me there was no way they were going to let me into a working coal mine. Turns out there are a billion and one easy ways to get yourself killed in a working mine. Good to know.

Besides the obvious black lung (which I avoided mentioning on tape mostly out of the shame created by a “too easy” joke) there where a hundred ways to get squished, crushed, or otherwise trampled before you even make it to the coal vein in the morning. Dynamite can More >

The Wonderful World of Greyhound

Hey Team,

I stepped up into the doorway resigned to the upcoming fifty-three hour marathon only to be slapped in the face by a wall of stale air. A quick look around shows only one empty seat; not leaving me the usual option of scouring the bus for the least stained place to plant myself. It’s the front seat. Not a terrible spot. At least not as compared to all of the other terrible spots. Notable drawbacks: No reading light, less leg room (but since the leg room is minimal anyway I go in expecting discomfort), and a little old lady who thinks she can “save me” by convincing me I should settle down and get married, “maybe have a few kids.”

I fold myself into a good book silently throwing out all the social cues I can muster to drive the point home that I don’t want to be having this conversation. The next forty-five minutes only bring me two pages closer to the climax. She needs no prompting to ask the next question and a never-ending string of one-word answers are nothing in the face of her persistence.

“Were you married once already?”

“No.”

“Is there a girl back home?”

“No.”

I think she’s More >

The Grandest of Holes in the Ground

Hey Team,

I’m back! Long story short: The Grand Canyon hike was incredible. Period.

Long story long (You guys didn’t actually think you’d get away with a short story did you?):

First of all, the permits for the Grand Canyon campgrounds only allow for up to eleven people in a group so I’m sorry to anyone that really wanted to go. Originally I was hoping to make it a much bigger meet-up but it just wasn’t possible. I guess we’ll have to make the end of Amtrekker extravaganza that much bigger!!!

The permit was filled quickly with friends and family that I hadn’t seen much of in the last year. Besides myself, Mom and Popamtrekker both made it out to the most famous of holes in the ground. Nate, Saadia, Erica, Cody and Rebecca (All of whom you saw in the sandboarding video!) were there. Spence (the dude that gave me the green Captain America shirt and another of my best friends) and Jaime (a good friend that just recently made it back to the US after a four year stint with the army in Germany) and Katy Moe (a friend from high school that I literally hadn’t seen in eight years but was More >


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